4 Ways to Fight Chronic Pain Without Painkillers
How does painkiller addiction start? Many painkiller addicts cite chronic pain as the underlying issue. Brought to the doctor’s office by debilitating and ongoing pain, they walked out with a painkiller prescription. Over time, their dosage increased until they had developed a tolerance to the drug – and a fear of ever trying to stop taking the medication.
Unfortunately, many patients increase their issue with chronic pain without realizing it. A handful of bad habits can mean heightened pain and a further dependence on painkillers.
The good news is that chronic pain doesn’t mean a life sentence in terms of painkiller addiction. There are ways to mitigate your pain as you lower your dosage and move towards becoming completely drug-free by addressing the bad habits that are worsening your experience with pain. Here are four helpful tips:
- Quit smoking. Smoking makes almost everything worse and chronic pain is no exception. In fact, studies show that those who smoke and have chronic pain also have a more difficult time at home, on the job, and with their mental health, sleep habits and quality of life. Quitting smoking can improve your life on all fronts.
- Get better sleep. It can be hard to sleep with chronic pain and some non-addictive sleep medications may help, but other methods like turning everything off an hour before bed, avoiding eating large meals three hours before sleep time, no lights and white noise, can all help you to relax enough to allow your body to fall asleep and stay asleep, which will in turn help you mitigate pain.
- Lose weight. Losing weight is like smoking; it affects every area of your life. Getting rid of extra pounds will give you more energy, put less stress on your joints and muscles, and can be enough to significantly lower the intensity of your aches and pains.
- Lower stress. More stress makes everything more difficult to deal with emotionally, including physical pain. Taking yoga classes, cutting back on stressful aspects of your life, and getting involved in healthy relationships and friendships can help you to feel better all around.
Overcome bad habits like these and not only will you lower your pain response, you’ll help yourself live longer too. Getting healthier also increases mood, which in turn can better help you to cope with pain in a more functional manner.
However, if painkiller addiction is a chronic problem for you and one you simply can’t get under control, you’re not alone. Call us at The Orchid today to learn about our painkiller addiction treatment programs and how we can help you be drug-free.